Posts Tagged ‘Minimulism’

slomo(In my daily pursuit to ignite the second-half of life, I came across this. It’s a 16-minute short film (link below) that’s turned heads at film festivals, and now I know why. If you ponder mid-life questions, you might want to watch. You’ll thank me later.)

For John Kitchin, practicing medicine no longer satisfied him. His Ferrari and his 30-acre ranch, populated with exotic zoo animals, no longer fulfilled him.

He left work each day asking himself: “How much of what I did today promoted me financially? And how much of it promoted me spiritually?”

Over the years, the answer became more and more about promoting himself financially.

It made no sense. He was working to support a lifestyle that didn’t make him happy. So he reset his priorities.

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smoking on bus

The Armenian Hostage Crisis (Part 2)

I’m not now, nor have I ever been, a prima donna.

But, was there a time when Greyhound bus travel was beneath me?

Absofuckinglootly.

Why?

Because (the logic went) bus travel is something poor people do. I’m not poor. Therefore the notion is preposterous.

Well, here I am. It’s a new dawn. It’s a new day. It’s a new life.

And I’m on a Greyhound Bus.

I love experiencing new things, but Greyhound bus travel never made my bucket list. However, due to new world realities, here I am. This is a financial decision, plain and simple.

Whenever I hear “Greyhound Bus” I think about the guy who stabbed, killed and then decapitated a total stranger sitting next to him a few years ago.

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(Part 1 of 2)
photo-2I used an outhouse for the first time. In fact, I used it three times on a recent four-day ice fishing trip with college friends in northern Minnesota. The temperature was right around zero the entire time. On my final trip to the outhouse (and if there’s a god in heaven, my final trip to ANY outhouse) the temperature was 11-below zero.

Survived a toilet seat at 11-blow zero felt like surviving Chernobyl. Or Auschwitz. Okay, that’s overstated. But trust me, it was simply horrific.

Said outhouse and adjoining property is owned by the father of a college friend of mine. He finally succeeded in coercing me to leave the 80-degree weather of my hometown and spend a weekend watching a bobber in a 6-inch hole cut in a frozen lake.

Remote only begins to describe this place. If you’ve ever seen “The Shining,” it’s like that, without the opulent hotel or Jack Nicholson with an ax.

In case you want to visit, here are the directions: Work your way to the North Shore of Lake Superior in Minnesota, exit the highway, and head back into the tall pines. Stay on an icy two-lane road for about 12 miles. Then, make a right-hand turn onto a very narrow, snow-packed road for another five miles and pray another vehicle doesn’t come the opposite direction (which it won’t because no one in their right mind is back here). Finally, park your four-wheel-drive vehicle at a clearing, mount a snowmobile with all your belongings and supplies, and skirt through the woods another quarter mile to the cabin.

Let’s just say it’s not a place to have a heart attack.

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Part 2 here of our little crash course on D4D 1.0. It follows Part 1. D4D 2.0 is when I spring into action this winter. I’ll stick around afterwards to sign autographs.

images7. Presbyterian guilt?: I used to feel guilty if I spent significant time doing something I didn’t consider either directly or indirectly income producing. That’s why I gave up writing–I couldn’t justify it on the bottom line. And I still can’t, but I’ve learned to get over the guilt and enjoy the pleasure. Everybody has a creative side. If you don’t know yours you should find it, nurture it, and let it reward you.

8. Just Say Yes to Drugs: In the last two years I’ve been on a daily, albeit mild, dose of the ant-depressant Effexor and Ritalin, the latter because I’ve been told I have an attention deficit issue. Hard to say for sure, of course, but something is working. Either the life coach, or the plan to be credit-card free next year, or the new apartment, or the medication. But I can assure you my body chemistry is more stable than it’s been in years. And if the medication is to thank, or even just partially to thank, then I’m going to keep taking it.

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22a1f54886179f63b50d250da9bd3635The only good thing about turning 50 is apparently 50 years is how long it takes to figure out a few things. Either that or my recent revelations are the universe’s way of saying, “Hey, sorry about your libido, your hairline, your patience and your eyesight. Oh and sorry you fell through the cracks of the New Economy. In return we’d like to compensate you with the answers to some of life’s mysteries.”

Which is what I’ve been doing here on D4D for the last six months, working through a lot of crap. On the Internet, no less. Apparently I’ve lost all sense of pride as well as my youth. Anyway, speaking of the ubiquitous Internet, I’d like to thank you, the electronic voyeurs in my psychodrama of mid-life. Thanks for reading, responding, and liking.

But now it’s time for D4D 2.0. (Yes, I know that might sound ridiculous–a new version of the new day for an animal extinct for millions of years. But it’s my blog so put a cork in it!) Anyway, I’m hoping the tone and narrative shift away from the self-discovery and goal setting portion of the program. Because I feel that work’s largely done. That was a time for adjectives. This is a time for verbs.

Before we move on, I’ll take a moment to review (as you might surmise this is also the skeleton of what a D4D book proposal might look like.)

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anxiety art 3Three weeks ago I was told I had to move, for reasons way too convoluted to get into here. I will just say the timing is out of my control. This being the sixth time in five years that I’ve relocated, I decided I needed to make the next place somewhat permanent.

After looking at about 15 apartments and submitting four different applications, I was finally approved for an affordable and very cute one-bedroom in a good part of town — within walking distance of lots of cool stuff. It seemed to meet most of my requirements, so I was ecstatic. For those of you in “normal” cities, where finding a decent apartment at a good price in a good neighborhood isn’t akin to finding a cure for cancer, let me just say this: in Los Angeles sometimes it seems that curing cancer might be easier.

I was out of town when I got the news, so I had the weekend to think it over before signing the dotted line.
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eliminatin artI’m about to move to my seventh address in the last five years. I wish there were a sexy reason for it, like witness protection or tax evasion. Unfortunately, I’m afraid it’s just straight up instability. And I’m so over it.

It’s time to get grounded! I’m ready for the dust to settle.

This five-year period of transience has been worth the price, I must say. It all started because I wanted a different life (be careful what you wish for). Back in 2009, I suggested to my now ex-partner that we shake things up and move to a different state. It didn’t take much convincing (my suggestion was his home state). So off we went to Los Angeles.
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